The 10 most beautiful sights in London

London for insiders: discover the most beautiful ten sights of the English capital. Our travel experts will show you how to enjoy your vacation!


What are the ten most beautiful sights of London? Every local will give you a different answer, but our local expert has compiled an exclusive list of the top ten attractions that will bring you closer to England's capital in an authentic way. Some attractions are free, many are kid-friendly and all of them give you London as it really is.

1. Borough Market

Located on the south bank of the Thames, Borough Market is the most famous market in the city and perfect for strolling or grabbing a bite to eat. Local and exotic foods compete at the many colorful stalls, while regular live events and the steady flow of crowds provide variety. From here, you can also easily stroll on toward the Tate Modern, Millennium Bridge and Southbank Centre, getting a sense of the proportions of the city.

Insider tip: Go to the market as early as possible, especially on Saturdays. Opening hours: Saturday from 8 a.m., Wednesday to Friday from 10 a.m. Go to the website ahead of time to learn more about gourmet events.

2. Tower Bridge

Tower Bridge has been one of London's iconic landmarks since the Victorian era. It represents British engineering during the Industrial Revolution. A visit to Tower Bridge includes a fascinating exhibition, but the real highlight is the crosswalk 42 meters above the River Thames. From here you can overlook the city skyline in all its glory: for instance, the impressive St. Paul's Cathedral or the glass skyscrapers of London's East End.

Insider tip: Try to time your visit to coincide with the opening hours of the lift bridge (about three times a day; check website for times) – it's an impressive spectacle! For the best photos of the river and London skyline, come at sunset.

3. Greenwich

Greenwich, with its cobblestone streets, markets and old-fashioned pubs, retains something of a village feel, but it's not exactly out of the way: Beyond the river bend, you can still see the skyscrapers at Canary Wharf in the City of London, and there's plenty to discover at the Royal Museums Greenwich: such as the sailboat Cutty Sark, the zero degree of longitude, and lots of astronomy at the Royal Observatory.

Insider tip: Take the Thames Clippers commuter ferry from the London Eye to Greenwich – you'll pass many of the British metropolis' sights along the way.

4. Hyde Park

As one of eight Royal Parks (which doesn't mean you'll meet the Queen there. ) Hyde Park stretches out in the middle of the city and is the perfect place to get some fresh air on a stuffy day. At the heart of the park is the Serpentine Lido, where you can swim daily or go boating in the summer, and the seven-mile Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Walk. The park is very popular among Londoners and is perfect for a leisurely picnic outdoors.

Insider tip: Rent one of the rental bicycles (known here as Boris Bikes: after the London mayor who introduced them) so you can leisurely cycle through Hyde Park away from car traffic.

5. Tate Modern

Tate Modern, the museum of modern and contemporary art, is impressive with its architecture alone in the former Bankside Power Station. The industrial scale of the setting, especially Turbine Hall, is befitting of the vast and important collection of art from the eras since 1900. Admission to the permanent collection is free, while tickets for the usually very popular temporary exhibitions should be booked well in advance!

Insider tip: Join one of the free guided tours with a museum guide (daily at 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.), where you'll be introduced to highlights of the collection and various themes.

6. St Paul's Cathedral

One of the enigmatic components of the London skyline, St Paul's Cathedral looks back on a time-honored history of more than 1.400 years ago. The dome rises more than 100 meters above the ground and is one of the largest in the world. But the climb is worth it: from the Golden Gallery you have fabulous views over the Thames, the Tate Modern and Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, while the Whispering Gallery is world-famous for its acoustics.

Insider tip: In addition to the dome, visit the crypt – here you'll find some impressive memorials to great Britons, including the graves of Lord Nelson and Lord Wellington.

7. British Museum

One of the best free museums in London is the British Museum. Here you will find a fascinating collection of artifacts and works of art from all over the world and from many civilizations. It's worth the visit just to see the impressive atrium, but the collection of around eight million pieces tops the architecture. Be sure to take enough time to get involved with human history or one of the many temporary exhibits.

Insider tip: Contrast modernity with antiquity and visit the Gallery of the Enlightenment at the British Museum. In a somewhat old-fashioned setting with lots of mahogany and oak, this display of curiosities takes you back to the golden age of discovery.

8. Kew Gardens

When you've had enough of the hustle and bustle of the City of London, visit the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew. A 30-minute train ride takes you to one of the world's oldest and most famous botanical gardens with sculpted landscapes, shady groves, lush green greenhouses and a great nature trail for kids. You can also learn about rare and exotic plant species, of which there are many at Kew.

Insider tip: Visit the peaceful Dukes Garden with its various species of lavender and velvety lawns, hidden behind high walls and therefore often overlooked.

9. Buckingham Palace

Every London tourist should pay the Queen a visit! Whether you're an ardent monarchist or a lover of beautiful buildings, Buckingham Palace is well worth a visit! Of course, because Buckingham Palace is inhabited, you won't be able to walk around freely in it. But the 19 ornate state rooms are open to visitors, so you can catch a sense of the life of the royals. Tours are usually only available in summer when the Queen is not at home; check the website for full details.

Insider tip: Come to the Changing of the Guard, a free royal ceremony that takes place every day. To get a good seat you should arrive at 10.Get there by 30!

10. Harrods in Knightsbridge

If you need another souvenir, head to Harrods in Knightsbridge. Probably the most famous department store in the world, it is worth a visit for its luxurious displays alone. Here you'll find some of the most exclusive fashion labels, beauty brands and homewares, as well as top-notch food stalls. Even those who don't want to show off their wealth can enjoy the spectacle.

Insider tip: Harrods Foodhall is the perfect place to find typical British food souvenirs. If you want to impress your friends, buy them a gift basket of English specialties – a great British tradition.